Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Following Up - Etiquette

Job Etiquette | Following Up with an Employer(photo by Neal Gillis)

When following up with an employer your mission is to do a few things:
  • Gain information in regards to your application or resume
  • Educate the recruiter or hiring manager about yourself and spark their interest in YOU for the open position
  • Be courteous and thankful to the recruiter
  • Ask any questions that can help them make a decision on you

Now that you know what you need to accomplish, what are the proper techniques to contacting the recruiter to follow up?

When to Follow Up

While there is no golden rule, you should allow the recruiter or hiring manager time to review the applications and resumes and also note where you saw the position advertised. From experience I can say that more popular jobs on the can see up to 300 responses in 1 week! That's a lot of resumes to go through.

Typically I tell job seekers that if they apply on a Monday and have not heard back to follow up with a call the following Monday. If you apply on a Friday, I would wait 10 days till the recurring Monday to email, call or visit their office.

How to Follow Up

This one is extremely important. When information is made available, follow instructions. However, in many cases there is no clear way for a job seeker to follow up or contact the hiring manager after applying online. Your next step should be to find a phone number and a name. First steps are to "Google" the company and look for their main website. On their site look for an about us and contact page. If there is no information here, turn to the Yellow Pages or other online phone book or directory.

If you are still having trouble finding a number or contact name, turn to advanced strategies such as LinkedIn. Search for the company and see who pops up. Later in the week we will have a video on how to use LinkedIn for research.

The goal in this section is to talk to a live person and get as much information as you can. See if there is anyway to go above and beyond without looking like a brownnoser or a stalker. Are there any resources you can supply or questions you can answer to help the recruiter solve a problem or simply make them remember you when they make a decision.

Questions to Ask

  • When are you looking to make a decision on this position?
  • What qualities are you looking for in an optimal candidate?
  • Can you tell me how this position impacts the organization?
  • When is the best time that I can follow up with you again?
  • Is there anyone else involved in looking at the applications and resumes?

As you follow up with employers remember to respect their time and their decision. If one door closes, look to open another. If the position has already been filled, ask about other opportunities at the company or ways to get involved or be notified of upcoming vacancies or hiring spurts.

Good luck Orlando and happy hunting!

-Greg Rollett


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